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Firefighter stops Carmel parade to deliver marriage proposal

“Pretty much all of Carmel got to see,” said Jacklyn Lewis.

CARMEL, Ind. — People came to downtown Carmel Monday morning expecting to see the annual Fourth of July Parade, and they did.   

They also saw some unexpected fireworks, but probably not the kind you’re thinking.

For Garrett Locke, sometimes you just know when you know.

“I tell her from the first time I asked her out on a date, I was like, ‘I’m pretty sure she’s the one,’” said Locke, a Carmel firefighter, referring to girlfriend Jaclyn Lewis.

Locke says he played the long game when he first met Lewis in 2018 at the nutrition store where he worked.

“I had walked in one day and we instantly hit it off. I went back a few more times and when I went in, we’d talk for hours and hours,” said Lewis.

The two became friends. A year later, a kiss changed all that.

“I was the one who initiated the first kiss, though he wants to deny that” said Lewis.

“She did,” Locke confirmed, smiling.

Six weeks after that first kiss, Lewis, a nurse, left for basic training in the United States Army.

“I actually realized he was the one for me when I left for the Army, and I was gone for seven months,” said Lewis. “We didn’t see each other at all, and we lasted through the whole time I was gone, so that was a sign to me.”

A year later, Lewis got another sign that Locke was the guy for her when Carmel’s entire Fourth of July parade came to a halt. And there was Locke, who had been marching in the parade with the fire department, getting down on one knee.

“Forever has to start somewhere, why not start it now?’” Locke said he told Lewis. “And that’s when I got down on one knee and asked her to marry me.” 

“Pretty much all of Carmel got to see,” Lewis said.

Now, the couple who started out as just friends have their own kind of Fourth of July fireworks story to tell their children and grandchildren.

“Everywhere she goes, she’s a light in the room,” Locke said. 

“I love the same about him,” Lewis said.

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